Milika in top form, helps team

FORMER Fiji decathlete Milika Tuivanuavou was grateful to her fellow Marist Seahawks players after they defeated Nadi Aviators 19-17.

The host were crowned new women champions after a super performance beating former champions Striders 19-12 in the semi-final of the 42 Fiji Bitter Marist rugby 7s tournaments yesterday.

The Vutuna, Nairai lass gave up her athletics career to play rugby and from then on she hasn’t regretted her decision.

Tuivanuavou was over the moon and gave credit to her team for a superb performance.

“It was fun coming from an individual sport, I am used to train and do everything on my own but when I joined rugby, especially this team, I learnt to be a team player,” she said.

“We all looked out for each other, we had each other’s back and I am glad that I chose this sport.”

The former triple jumper spoke on her first win since joining the sport.

“It has been amazing to have that winning feeling because I’ve always been on the sidelines watching and cheering but to be able to play I am grateful to our coaches for believing in me.”

It was a close match between the two teams as Nadi Aviators were winning 17-12.

But the Suva girls never gave up as they fought their way back. National rep Jiowana Sauto scored to level the points and the successful conversion broke the Western girls’ heart right at the very last-minute.

Captain Roela Radiniyavuni gave credit to the players for that last minute performance.

“We never gave up and fought our way to the tryline. Hats off to these girls, they deserve it.”

They walked away with $1300 as the prizemoney.

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